Ever thought you could armour your own vehicle using little more than a handful of 3 mm mild-steel plates and some basic DIY skills? Well, here’s why that’d be a terrible idea…

Think armouring a vehicle is as simple as placing a few mild-steel plates in choice areas? Well, think again.  

In the tenth episode of Season One of our innovative Shoot Through series of videos, we emphatically answer the question of whether a 3 mm mild-steel plate is capable of stopping an AK47 round.

With the 3 mm mild-steel plate secured at the far end of our dedicated underground shooting range, we unleashed a round from an AK47 mounted in a test rig. As shown in the footage captured by a Photron Fastcam SA4 high-speed camera – generously supplied by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and set at 30 000 frames per second – the 7.62×39 mm conventional steel-core round penetrates the plate with ease.

“The slow-motion footage shows the round punch right through the mild-steel plate, with seemingly very impact on its velocity. That just proves the penetrating power of the AK47 round and is the reason our B6 armouring packages include specialised materials such as custom-fabricated armoured steel plates and high-grade 38 mm ballistic glass,” said Jaco de Kock, CEO of SVI.

So, what happens if we double the thickness of the mild-steel plate to 6 mm? Will the result be any different?

To answer this question, we subjected a 6 mm mild-steel plate to fire from an AK47, again mounted in a test rig in our underground shooting range.

And, yes, the round again had no problems punching right through the thicker plate.

“The 6 mm mild-steel plate may look and feel very similar to the armoured steel version, but as you can tell from the slow-motion footage, it certainly doesn’t provide the same – if any at all – ballistic protection when faced with AK47 fire,” said De Kock.

Time for the real thing. Yes, we’re next going to give the conventional steel-core round a virtually impossible task – to take on a certified armoured steel plate.

Watch the video below to see what happens when the imported 6 mm armoured steel plate takes fire from the AK47.

“At SVI, we use only the world’s best-quality certified armoured steel, which we specially import from Sweden. With the plate’s Brinell hardness value as high as 500, the AK47 round didn’t stand a chance … other than to lightly damage the paint, that is,” quipped De Kock.

Any more questions on the topic? Ask us on social media or contact us here. Also, be sure to check out the rest of Season One of the ‘Shoot Through’ series here.